0713-21 NY Times Crossword 13 Jul 21, Tuesday

Constructed by: Bruce Haight
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme (according to Bill) Phrases from the Diamond

Themed answers are idioms originating from baseball:

  • 18A Address every aspect of something : COVER ALL THE BASES
  • 28A Immediately : RIGHT OFF THE BAT
  • 44A Oddly and unexpectedly : OUT OF LEFT FIELD
  • 57A Situation that starts things completely over : WHOLE NEW BALL GAME

Bill’s time: 6m 45s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

16 Beethoven’s “Für ___” : ELISE

“Für Elise” is a beautiful piece of solo piano music by Beethoven that is also known as “Bagatelle in A Minor”. “Für Elise” simply means “For Elise”, but sadly no one knows for sure the identity of the mysterious dedicatee.

17 “Orinoco Flow” singer : ENYA

“Orinoco Flow” is a song by Irish singer Enya that she released in 1988. It’s the one that goes “sail away, sail away, sail away …”

22 Pseudonym of the essayist Charles Lamb : ELIA

The “Essays of Elia” began appearing in “London Magazine” in 1820, and were immediate hits with the public. The author was Charles Lamb, and “Elia” was actually a clerk with whom Lamb worked. The most famous of the essays in the collection are probably “Dream-Children” and “Old China”.

25 Part of a wineglass or watch : STEM

The stem of a watch is the shaft that projects from the body that is used to wind the mechanism. Prior to the introduction of stem watches, the timepieces were wound up using a key.

27 “Kill the ump!,” e.g. : CRY

Back in the 15th century, “an umpire” was referred to as “a noumpere”, which was misheard and hence causing the dropping of the initial letter N. The term “noumpere” came from Old French “nonper” meaning “not even, odd number”. The idea was that the original umpire was a third person called on to arbitrate between two, providing that “odd number” needed to decide the dispute.

33 Proficient : ADROIT

The French for “to the right” is “à droit”, from which we get our word “adroit”. The original meaning of “adroit” was “rightly, properly”, but it has come to mean dexterous and skillful. Someone described as “maladroit” is unskilled and awkward.

34 Supervillain in Marvel comics : ARES

Superhero Wonder Woman first appeared in print in 1941, in a publication from DC Comics. As she was created during WWII, Wonder Woman’s first foes were the axis powers. In the less realistic world her biggest foe was and still is Ares, a “baddie” named after the Greek mythological figure. Wonder Woman had several signature expressions, including “Merciful Minerva!”, “Suffering Sappho!” and “Great Hera!”. She also has several devices that she uses in her quest for justice, e.g. the Lasso of Truth, a pair of indestructible bracelets and a tiara that can be used as a deadly projectile. Wonder Woman uses the name “Diana Prince” when “out of uniform”.

35 One way up a mountain : T-BAR

A T-bar is a ski lift on which the skiers are pulled up the hill in pairs, with each pair standing (not sitting!) either side of a T-shaped metal bar. The bar is placed behind the thighs, pulling along the skiers as they remain standing on their skis (hopefully!). There’s also a J-bar, which is a similar device but with each J-shaped bar used by one skier at a time.

39 Email about big lottery winnings, usually : SCAM

The slang term “scam”, meaning “swindle”, may come from the British slang “scamp”.

41 ___ Sabe (the Lone Ranger, to Tonto) : KEMO

“Kemosabe” is a term used by the Tonto character in the iconic radio and television program “The Lone Ranger”. “Kemosabe” doesn’t really mean anything outside of the show, and in fact was written as “ke-mo sah-bee” in the original radio show scripts. The term was created by longtime director of “The Lone Ranger” Jim Jewell. To come up with the term, Jewell used the name of a boy’s camp that his father-in-law established called Kamp Kee-Mo Sah-Bee.

42 Babe in the woods : NAIF

A naïf is someone who is naive, as “naïf” is the French word for “naive”.

47 “Yo, what’s happening” : SUP

“Sup?” is slang for “what’s up?”

50 Money to tide one over : LOAN

Something is said to tide one over if it (often money) will see one through a rough patch. The idea behind the verb phrase “to tide over” is that a swelling tide can carry one over an obstacle without effort, as perhaps a reserve fund might keep the lenders from one’s door. The use of “tide” in this sense might come from some famous lines spoken by Brutus in the play “Julius Caesar” by William Shakespeare

There is a Tide in the affairs of men,
Which taken at the Flood, leads on to Fortune

53 Air-condition : COOL

The modern form of air conditioning (AC) that is still used today was invented by Willis Carrier in 1902. He co-founded the Carrier Engineering Corporation in New York in 1915. The Carrier Corporation eventually moved to Syracuse, New York in 1937. Beyond the world of air conditioning, the Carrier name has been associated with Syracuse University’s famous Carrier Dome since it opened in 1980. The Carrier Dome is the largest on-campus basketball stadium in the country.

66 Cockamamie : NUTSO

“Cockamamy” (sometimes “cockamamie”) is a slang term meaning “ridiculous, incredible”. The term goes back at least to 1946, but may have originated as an informal term used by children in New York City in the 1920s.

Down

1 Self-defense spray : MACE

“Mace” is actually a brand name, one introduced by Lake Erie Chemical when they started to manufacture “Chemical Mace”, with the name being a play on the club-like weapon from days of old. Mace was originally a form of tear gas, but Mace today uses a formula that is actually a pepper spray, a different formulation.

5 “Voilà!” : HERE IT IS!

The French word “voilà” means “there it is”, and “voici” means “here it is”. The terms come from “voi là” meaning “see there” and “voi ici” meaning “see here”.

6 Kind of pitcher : RELIEF

That would be baseball.

7 Jazz legend Fitzgerald : ELLA

Ella Fitzgerald, the “First Lady of Song”, had a hard and tough upbringing. She was raised by her mother alone in Yonkers, New York. Her mother died while Ella was still a schoolgirl, and around that time the young girl became less interested in her education. She fell in with a bad crowd, even working as a lookout for a bordello and as a Mafia numbers runner. She ended up in reform school, from which she escaped, and found herself homeless and living on the streets for a while. Somehow Fitzgerald managed to get herself a spot singing in the Apollo Theater in Harlem. From there her career took off and as they say, the rest is history.

8 Prestigious sch. in metro Boston : MIT

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) was founded in 1861 and first offered classes in 1865, in the Mercantile building in Boston. Today’s magnificent campus on the banks of the Charles River in Cambridge opened in 1916.

10 Shelters once made from buffalo skins : TEEPEES

A tepee (also written as “tipi” and “teepee”) is a cone-shaped tent traditionally made from animal hides that is used by the Great Plains Native Americans. A wigwam is a completely different structure and is often a misnomer for a tepee. A wigwam is a domed structure built by Native Americans in the West and Southwest, intended to be a more permanent dwelling. The wigwam can also be covered with hides but more often was covered with grass, reeds, brush or cloth.

11 Sail the seven ___ : SEAS

The phrase “the seven seas” has been used for centuries by many different peoples. The actual definition of what constitutes the collection of seven has varied depending on the period and the culture. Nowadays we consider the seven largest bodies of water as the seven seas, namely:

  • The North Pacific Ocean
  • The South Pacific Ocean
  • The North Atlantic Ocean
  • The South Atlantic Ocean
  • The Indian Ocean
  • The Southern Ocean
  • The Arctic Ocean

25 Attack with a low flyover : STRAFE

We’ve been using “strafe” to mean “attack on a ground position from low-flying aircraft” since WWII. Prior to that, the word was used by British soldiers to mean any form of attack. It was picked up from the German word for “punish” as it was used in “Gott strafe England” meaning, “May God punish England”.

30 Early record player : GRAMOPHONE

Famously, Thomas Edison invented the phonograph in 1877, which was a device that recorded sound onto wax phonograph cylinders. The flat disc phonograph record was developed by Emile Berliner, a German-born American inventor. Berliner called his flat disc record player a “gramophone”, and started selling Berliner Gramophone records in 1894.

32 Transportation in a Duke Ellington tune : A-TRAIN

The A Train in the New York City Subway system runs from 207th Street, through Manhattan and over to Far Rockaway in Queens. The service lends its name to a jazz standard “Take the ‘A’ Train”, the signature tune of Duke Ellington and a song much sung by Ella Fitzgerald. One version of the lyrics are:

You must take the A Train
To go to Sugar Hill way up in Harlem
If you miss the A Train
You’ll find you’ve missed the quickest way to Harlem
Hurry, get on, now, it’s coming
Listen to those rails a-thrumming (All Aboard!)
Get on the A Train
Soon you will be on Sugar Hill in Harlem.

36 Member of the first family : ABEL

According to the Bible, Adam and Eve had several children, although only the first three are mentioned by name: Cain, Abel and Seth.

37 Actor Foxx of “Sanford and Son” : REDD

“Redd Foxx” was the stage name of John Elroy Sanford, best known for starring in “Sanford and Son”. “Sanford and Son” was an American version of a celebrated hit BBC sitcom that I grew up with in Ireland called “Steptoe and Son”.

“Sanford and Son” is an American version of a celebrated hit BBC sitcom that I grew up with in Ireland, called “Steptoe and Son”. Redd Foxx played Fred G. Sanford, and Demond Wilson played Fred’s son Lamont Sandford.

52 Bygone G.M. product, informally : OLDS

Oldsmobile was an automobile brand founded by Ransom E. Olds (REO) in 1897. The brand was finally phased out by General Motors in 2004.

53 One who’s radio-active? : CB’ER

A CB’er is someone who operates a Citizens Band (CB) radio. In 1945, the FCC set aside certain radio frequencies for the personal use of citizens. The use of the Citizens Band increased throughout the seventies as advances in electronics brought down the size of transceivers and their cost. There aren’t many CB radios sold these days though, as they have largely been replaced by cell phones.

54 Electrical unit : WATT

James Watt was a Scottish inventor. He figured prominently in the Industrial Revolution in Britain, largely due to the improvements he made to the fledgling steam engine. The SI unit of power is called the watt, and was named in his honor.

55 Iowa college town : AMES

Iowa State University of Science and Technology (ISU) is located in Ames, Iowa. Among many other notable milestones, ISU created the country’s first school of veterinary medicine, in 1879. The sports teams of ISU are known as the Cyclones.

56 Ticker-tape parade honoree : HERO

Stock price information used to be transmitted over telegraph lines by “stock tickers” that produced the famous “ticker tape”, a paper tape with stock symbols and prices printed on it. The “ticker” got its name from the noise it created when it was printing. Even though ticker tape is no longer used, the concept lives on in the scrolling electronic tickers that stream across the bottom of a television screen when there’s a financial program airing.

60 Prey for a lion : GNU

The gnu is also known as the wildebeest, and is an antelope native to Africa. “Wildebeest” is a Dutch meaning “wild beast”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Transform, as from one being into another : MORPH
6 Send, as payment : REMIT
11 Bro and sis : SIBS
15 In the know : AWARE
16 Beethoven’s “Für ___” : ELISE
17 “Orinoco Flow” singer : ENYA
18 Address every aspect of something : COVER ALL THE BASES
21 Ram’s ma’am? : EWE
22 Pseudonym of the essayist Charles Lamb : ELIA
23 Impersonate : POSE AS
24 Bit of cunning : WILE
25 Part of a wineglass or watch : STEM
27 “Kill the ump!,” e.g. : CRY
28 Immediately : RIGHT OFF THE BAT
33 Proficient : ADROIT
34 Supervillain in Marvel comics : ARES
35 One way up a mountain : T-BAR
38 Potters’ materials : CLAYS
39 Email about big lottery winnings, usually : SCAM
40 Illegal payment : BRIBE
41 ___ Sabe (the Lone Ranger, to Tonto) : KEMO
42 Babe in the woods : NAIF
43 Not off one’s rocker? : SEATED
44 Oddly and unexpectedly : OUT OF LEFT FIELD
47 “Yo, what’s happening” : SUP
49 “Mm-hmm, it’s clear now” : I SEE
50 Money to tide one over : LOAN
51 One way boats come : ASHORE
53 Air-condition : COOL
54 Outburst in a nursery : WAH!
57 Situation that starts things completely over : WHOLE NEW BALL GAME
61 Be inclined (to) : TEND
62 “Awesome!” : SWEET!
63 Use the return key for : ENTER
64 Things assayers assay : ORES
65 Pitchers : EWERS
66 Cockamamie : NUTSO

Down

1 Self-defense spray : MACE
2 Response to a sting : OW OW!
3 Gush praise : RAVE
4 Opposite of post- : PRE-
5 “Voilà!” : HERE IT IS!
6 Kind of pitcher : RELIEF
7 Jazz legend Fitzgerald : ELLA
8 Prestigious sch. in metro Boston : MIT
9 Kinda-sorta: Suffix : -ISH
10 Shelters once made from buffalo skins : TEEPEES
11 Sail the seven ___ : SEAS
12 Camper’s annoyance : INSECT BITE
13 One way to “play it” : BY EAR
14 Smart-mouthed : SASSY
19 Apportion : ALLOT
20 Go over terribly with an audience : BOMB
24 Snide question to one issuing a challenge : WHO? YOU?
25 Attack with a low flyover : STRAFE
26 The outsiders : THEM
28 Strain, as one’s brain : RACK
29 Like a team on a day off : IDLE
30 Early record player : GRAMOPHONE
31 Effortless : FACILE
32 Transportation in a Duke Ellington tune : A-TRAIN
36 Member of the first family : ABEL
37 Actor Foxx of “Sanford and Son” : REDD
39 An umpire’s outstretched arms signifies this : SAFE
40 Happened to, poetically : BEFALLEN
42 What gibberish makes : NO SENSE
43 Piece of pub furniture : STOOL
45 One for the road? : TIRE
46 Units in a homecoming parade : FLOATS
47 Took care of : SAW TO
48 Certain worker in a stadium : USHER
52 Bygone G.M. product, informally : OLDS
53 One who’s radio-active? : CB’ER
54 Electrical unit : WATT
55 Iowa college town : AMES
56 Ticker-tape parade honoree : HERO
58 “That’s disgusting!” : EWW!
59 Tiny : WEE
60 Prey for a lion : GNU

11 thoughts on “0713-21 NY Times Crossword 13 Jul 21, Tuesday”

  1. 6:45 Seems that I tied Bill’s Time. Looks like we might have to go into Extra Innings – to continue the baseball phrases. But somehow I think Bill is a better Closer. 🙂

  2. 8:11. Fitting theme now that it’s the all star break for the MLB season. I wonder if it was planned that way?

    We used to use a CB radio on road trips from St. Louis out to Colorado during ski season when I was a kid. I remember that 95% of its use was making sure there were no speed traps coming up on the highway and/or to find out where the nearest restroom was. “Are there any Smokey’s over your shoulder?”, e.g. asking about state police presence.

    I was always taught that “I will LOAN him $5” was incorrect. “LOAN” is a noun and “lend” is the verb. But common usage has made “LOAN” a verb so we have to grudgingly accept that usage of the word.

    Turns out that’s exactly opposite of what happened. “Loan” being used as a verb has been around for about 900 years. What’s happening now is that it’s actually being phased out as a verb – not phased in. Mostly it’s just we Americans that use it as such. The British have mostly stopped using “loan” as a verb. I had a pedantic aunt (ex college professor) who brought this to my attention just recently.

    Babbling again today.

    Best –

  3. Interesting discussion of “loan” and “lend” (which I think I use interchangeably).

    It’s odd how usage can evolve over time. Yesterday, during an early-morning nine-mile walk, I found myself bemoaning the fact that, at 78, I can’t jump over obstacles the way I once could, and I found myself thinking that, once upon a time, I could have “leapt” over something in the trail with ease. Or … would I have “leaped” over it (with a long “e”)? That led to a consideration of recent encounters with the past tense of “plead”, which to me, is “pled”, but recently, on the radio, I almost always hear “pleaded” (again, with a long “e”).

    I have read that, with few exceptions, irregular past tenses are dying out and that, in at most a few hundred years, they will all be gone.

    Maybe my problem yesterday was that I simply hadn’t sleeped enough before hitting the trail … 😜.

  4. About 18 min. no errors…I would have been embarrassing if I “struck out” on this one😀
    Stay safe😀

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.